Two bids placed for Seagram - Allied out

Two bids placed for Seagram - Allied out News Wine News
  • Wednesday 13 December 2000

Vivendi Universal has received two offers for Seagram's drinks business.

The international wine and spirits group has received a bid of between US$8 billion and US$8.5bn from Diageo and Pernod Ricard, according to Reuters. 'That is the sort of figure that we are talking about,' said an industry source. The Anglo-French team plan to divide the costs 50-50, the source said, adding that this split may change.

A bid has also been placed by the three-member consortium of Bacardi, Brown-Forman and Swedish group Vin & Sprit, but a value has not been disclosed.

Vivendi spokesman Antoine Lefort says, 'We have at this time received two very competitive proposals for the sale of our spirits and wine businesses,' adding 'a definitive agreement will be signed before the end of the year.'

According to the Wall Street Journal, the Diageo-Pernod duo is seen as the favourite to win the bid. Lefort declined to comment on the bidders or the value of any offers. A winner could be decided by the end of this week, although the outcome was more likely to be announced on Monday, December 18, Reuters reported.

UK-based Allied Domecq unexpectedly dropped out of the auction today, reports the Financial Times, and instead invested E575 million (US$500m) in Champagne houses GH Mumm & Cie and Champagne Perrier-Jouet, whose portfolio include brands such as Belle Epoque and Cordon Rouge.

According to Reuters, Allied was tipped as a hot favourite for purchasing Seagram but has concluded that a purchase would not 'deliver shareholder value'.

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